One Story Issue #283: Carrie R. Moore’s “Naturale”

Our new issue was procured and edited by contributing editor Karen Friedman, so I’m happy to hand the mic over to her to make the introductions. Here’s Karen on why “Naturale” is such an awesome story. — PR

“Naturale” by Carrie R. Moore, begins with a betrayal. When we meet the main character, Cherie, her husband has just confessed to an affair. Cherie doesn’t shout or throw her coffee in his face. Instead, she pushes down her anger until she can be mild and pleasant—the woman she thinks her husband wants. Half a page later they’re sharing a bath.

But Cherie is no doormat. As a hairstylist who ministers to her clients, Cherie understands not only the hidden burdens women can carry, but also the potential consequences of their rage. Like so many, Cherie knows that “unlikeable” is the kindest judgement our society passes on an angry Black woman. However, it will come as no surprise to our readers that Cherie’s desire for gentleness cannot force her to forget her husband’s actions.

In exploring the aftermath of a very personal betrayal, Moore pushes us to ask broader questions about our biases and assumptions. How much of our behavior is dictated by the expectations of others? Moore expertly sifts through the layers of gender, race, education, and class with grace and wit, ultimately leading the reader to the conclusion that perhaps forgiveness cannot be found without first allowing anger its due.

One Story is delighted to bring you this expansive story, and especially to introduce you to Carrie R. Moore, an emerging writer of immense talent.

To read an interview with the author, please visit our website.

2 thoughts on “One Story Issue #283: Carrie R. Moore’s “Naturale”

  1. Looks like Cherie’s character will be very patient. But here’s the strength, which makes it curious to read the story more deeply.

  2. I just read this marvelous, deep, resonant, intricate and so true story. Also a page-turner. Cherie grows in you like her baby is growing in her, and you have to force yourself to read slowly and appreciate how well it is written. It took this long-married white male into intimate places that I recognized and knew about (somewhat) but I was able to experience more than before. If I may add a small parallel — in the interview, the author mentions 28 revisions before the story was the way she wanted it; such craft and patience and attention to detail! Professional writing is a bit like professional hairdressing, isn’t it?

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